Mart throughput continues to grow week on week. While the onset of peak calf selling weeks is helping this, marts are also beginning to see larger numbers of weanlings coming on stream.
The first signs of spring in the past week have started to get more farmer buyers looking at buying grazing cattle for the summer. This coupled with slight increases in factory prices and high demand for fit cattle ringside is giving a renewed confidence at marts.
Cattle in excess of 600kg saw a slight increase on average this week.
However, it seems as numbers are tight and factory agents are eager for stock, the biggest beneficiary of this is the lower-quality animal coming into fit condition.
With heifer stock scarcer on the ground, short-keep lots saw a slight increase of 2c/kg on the week
The bottom third of heifers at 600kg or more saw average price rise by 7c/kg on the week to settle at €1.93/kg.
This average price was mirrored for steers of the same weight, which is actually up 12c/kg on the week.
With heifer stock scarcer on the ground, short-keep lots saw a slight increase of 2c/kg on the week. This trend wasn’t replicated for steers who had double the numbers forward.
As mentioned, the sunshine is starting to get buyers thinking about stock for summer grazing. Mart managers highlighted demand for lighter stores in the last week compared with the previous few. While heifers sub-400kg saw a drop on the week, average still remains very high at €2.30/kg. Steers of the same weight did see an increase of 5c/kg on the week, but this is off an average of over 15c/kg back on the heifers.
Both bull and heifer weanlings sub 400kg saw averages of in excess of €2.50/kg
Heifers over 400kg rose by 5c/kg to see average rest at €2.25/kg. Prices paid across the quality types in this weight division for steers was consistently about 5c back on their heifer comrades. Weanlings saw the biggest changes on the week with farmer activity sky rocketing with the sunny spell. Prices generally rose anywhere between 10c/kg and 22c/kg across the different weight divisions.
As the weights rose, the prices dropped back slightly
Both bull and heifer weanlings sub 400kg saw averages of in excess of €2.50/kg. For the better quality lots of these weights, prices surpassed €3/kg but generally came in around an impressive €2.95/kg. Even the lesser-quality lots on offer were making in excess of €2/kg.
As the weights rose, the prices dropped back slightly but still recorded impressive averages of just shy of €2.40/kg for heifers and slightly over it for bulls. The better quality lots of these weanlings were readily making €2.60/kg plus.
While the increased numbers don’t seem to be affecting trade any bit for the calves since the boats started moving, the in-milk cow trade continues to be on fire.
As highlighted in last week’s paper, mart managers are reporting lightening trade for quality young dairy stock.
This week’s average rose a further €250 on the week to settle at €1,550
Over €2,000 is still achievable for many lots across the country as long as they match up on performance and looks.
This week’s average rose a further €250 on the week to settle at €1,550. This average increased to just shy of €1,900 for the top third of lots sold.
Sheep factory prices are reaching record highs and the mart trade is seeing another lift. Good-quality 50kg plus hoggets are selling for in excess of €155.